While most toe deformities are a result of poorly fitting shoes, a claw toe is caused by muscle imbalance, and the imbalance may be due to conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, polio, neuromuscular disorders, a stroke or other conditions. A claw toe is a toe that is contracted at the middle and end joints and can occur in any toe except the big toe. It can lead to severe pain and pressure. The toe curls downward due to tendons and ligaments that have tightened. The top part of the toe rubs against the shoe causing discomfort at the top and the end of the toe. The following pictures show the surgical steps of a hammer toe procedure called a Post arthroplasty. Modifications of this procedure may include a fusion of the joint, pinning of the toe or digital implant. These photos show dissection at the level of the proximal interphalangeal joint (PIPJ) for correction of a hammer toe. Image 1 shows the pre-operative postition of the hammer toe. Image 2 shows a release of the dorsal capsule and extensors tendons with a #15 blade at the level of the metatarsal phalangeal joint. Image 3 shows the long extensor tendon at the level of the PIPJ. While these string players weren’t experiencing foot pain, the principle was the same. We’d chosen to use our bodies in a manner of repetitive misalignment which over time has created pain and injury, and all warning signs were being been ignored hoping the problem would just go away. No one thought it could be different, knew what to look for as a solution to balance the body, or was actively correcting misalignments and challenging the weaker muscles to catch up for improved posture and health. Aug 15, 2010 By Kathryn Meininger Photo Caption There are some complications possible after hammer toe surgery. Photo Credit feet image by jimcox40 from Fotolia.com If you have hammer toe, it’s likely that your physician will recommend a change of shoe Shock-absorbent inserts that cushion the foot are also a standard in preventing and relieving foot pain. Relieve hammer toe symptoms by wearing shoes with low heels or no heels. Look for a wide toe box that gives your feet plenty of room. Flexibility is key; always test the movement of the shoe. But this alone may not treat the problem. If you have hammer toe, you need to treat it. You have several options available to you. While you may think that the symptoms that you or other individuals might experience would be isolated to the feet, you would only be partially correct. The severe pain that can result from a toe deformity can cause unnecessary strain of the leg and back muscles, resulting in widespread pain. In addition to pain, walking and even wearing shoes can become problematic when hammertoes or other deformities are allowed to persist. A quick caveat - whilst you can eliminate most pain symptoms with hypnosis and energy psychology tools, you have to ask yourself why you're experiencing the pain in the first place. Please use this technique sensibly! According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, hammer toes refer to a deformity in your second , third or fourth toes. Your toes can be claw-like in appearance and you can have pain or difficulty moving the toe. A toe injury or medical condition such as diabetic neuropathy (damage to your nerves) can cause hammer toes. There are specific steps to get rid of hammer toes. Step 1 Wear comfortable and roomy low-heeled shoes with orthotics (foot inserts). According to the Mayo Clinic, orthotics can help align your toes properly to prevent the development of hammer toes. Step 2 Toe length discrepancy or narrow toe box induces PIPJ flexion by forcing digit to accommodate shoewear. May also lead to MTP joint synovitis secondary to overuse, with elongation of plantar plate and MTP joint hyperextension. Any condition that compromises intra-articular and periarticular tissues, such as 2nd ray longer than 1st, inflammatory joint disease, improper fitting shoes, and trauma (1) Goal of treatment is to reduce or relieve symptoms so that patients may return to their normal activity level. Management includes surgical and nonsurgical interventions. Mild cases, however, may not require treatment. A crunch is an abs exercise, but there's another type of crunch that can be done to work the toes. To perform it, sit on a chair in a comfortable position with no sock on your affected foot. Place a towel on the floor and put the upper half of your foot on it. Keep your heel down on the ground and crunch the towel up with your toes. Release them back out and repeat 10 to12 times. Taps Wear footwear with lots of room for your toes, using corn pads, insoles and supports in your shoes to relieve pressure on toes This comes straight from Enid Blyton's shoe maker stories and elves and the entire world of fantasy and fairy tales. Remember that story? I found it to be one of the sweetest stories ever! But coming out of that fantasy, it is not a big deal to make your own pair. You just have to really want to make them and that too on your own way. All you need other than that is a bit of creativity and an aesthetic sense. While doing all this, remember that the fabric should be enough so that it can meet at the bottom of the shoe.